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If Your Child Needs Straight Teeth, Consider These 4 Types of Braces

There are many reasons why your children might need orthodontic care, but regardless of the cause, making sure your children have straight teeth is an important part of their oral health. Straight teeth contribute to confidence, oral hygiene, and self-esteem.

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There are many different types of braces the orthodontist may recommend for your child, from traditional metal to self-litigating. Make sure to speak to your orthodontist about the best option for your child, your budget, and your lifestyle. There are many options, and with financing options through dental offices, you can find the right one for your family.

If your child needs straight teeth, here are four different types of braces you can consider as options.

1. Traditional Metal Braces

Traditional braces, often referred to as metal braces, are the quintessential version of braces. These are what you picture in your mind when someone says “braces.” Many people also think of them as uncomfortable contraptions (thanks to their negative portrayal in movies and television) but the truth is traditional braces have a come a long way.

Traditional braces consist of brackets attached to teeth and a metal wire fed through the brackets. By using this setup, your orthodontist will make gradual adjustments to the tension in the wire, which will slowly guide your children’s teeth into their appropriate places. Traditional braces are usually the most affordable option and often take the least amount of time to complete the process. The trade-off is that they are also the most visible and will require regular visits to the orthodontist.

2. Clear, Ceramic Braces

Clear braces are very similar to traditional braces; they work on the same principles. Brackets are installed on the teeth and a wire is used to guide teeth into place. The major difference is that the brackets are made from ceramic, not metal. This makes them less visible when installed.

Ceramics are often more expensive than traditional braces, and the material can be more brittle than metal brackets. Extra care will have to be used to maintain them when it comes to oral hygiene. Your child will still require regular visits with your orthodontist as treatment progresses.

3. Self-Litigating Braces

Self-litigating braces are placed much like traditional braces; however, they do not include metal ties or rubber bands. Instead, special clips are used in conjunction with the archwire to move teeth into place. These clips allow for greater movement, which reduces discomfort that may come with braces. If you opt for this method, you will still require regular visits with your orthodontist (though less frequently than with traditional braces), but the process of adjustment is simpler and thus faster. They are easier to keep clean, but because the brackets are attached to the teeth with adhesive, proper oral hygiene is imperative to a successful procedure.

4. Clear Aligners

Clear aligners are completely different than the concept of braces but they don’t function to move teeth. They are simply a set of removable trays that are worn in a specific sequence to move teeth. They are transparent and they are provided by different companies like Invisalign and Clear Correct.

Some calls them invisible braces, clear braces, and transparent braces. Although they are not braces, they can work like them.

These are four of the many different types of braces available to straighten teeth. It’s a good idea to know about the different options that can give your children straight teeth. Ultimately, you should make sure to speak with your orthodontist. He or she is the expert and works with braces all day, every day. There are many different variables that can complicate the success of any one type of braces, which is why an orthodontist should be consulted before choosing the type. In the end, regardless of your family’s budget, lifestyle, or physical needs, there is a type of braces that will work perfectly for you.


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Alberta Dental Association & College
Canadian Dental Association
Canadian Association of Orthodontists
Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists
American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry
Canadian Academy of Pediatric Dentistry
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American Association of Orthodontics
American Board of Orthodontics